Randy Bernard is out as the head of IndyCar, which qualifies as a news item only in the sense that his date of departure hadn't yet been penciled in.
Now it has: Oct. 28, 2012.
He leaves, likely under pressure, after 2 1/2 tumultuous years in which he did some very good things, but butted heads with a formidable old guard that remains the driving force in the sport.
On the plus side, his introduction of two new engine builders and fast-tracking the new 2012 chassis made for perhaps the most compelling season of racing for the series since Tony George formed the IRL in 1995. On the minus side, a third straight year in which the series failed to turn a profit and a dispute over availability of parts for the new cars ignited a palace coup that was an open secret all season.
But what began his downfall, at least here in the Blobosphere, was the disastrous decision to try to lure a few NASCAR drivers to IndyCar's season finale in Las Vegas by posting a bonus that would be paid any non-series regular who took up the challenge.
In the end, no NASCAR drivers bit, but 2011 Indianapolis 500 winner and series icon Dan Wheldon, who was without a regular ride, did. He started 34th in a 34-car field far too large for the fast, tight Vegas venue, and was killed in the horrific multi-car crash that resulted.
It was a blow from which the sport is still recovering, and whose onus was squarely on Bernard, whose idea was reckless and horrendously ill-considered. In the Blob's humble opinion, the clock started on Bernard right then and there.
And now, it's run out. And despite the Wheldon tragedy, I have to say it's too bad. I think Bernard's ideas for turning around the series were, with the one tragic exception, absolutely on the mark. And I think in time they would have borne considerable fruit.
But you can't get sideways with the old guard and expect to survive in IndyCar. Which is part of its problem.